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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    Assault on California Power Station Raises Alarm on Potential for Terrorism

    SAN JOSE, Calif.—The attack began just before 1 a.m. on April 16 last year, when someone slipped into an underground vault not far from a busy freeway and cut telephone cables.

    Within half an hour, snipers opened fire on a nearby electrical substation. Shooting for 19 minutes, they surgically knocked out 17 giant transformers that funnel power to Silicon Valley. A minute before a police car arrived, the shooters disappeared into the night.

    The attack was "the most significant incident of domestic terrorism involving the grid that has ever occurred" in the U.S., said Jon Wellinghoff, who was chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission at the time.

    In a news release, PG&E said the substation had been hit by vandals. It has since confirmed 17 transformers were knocked out.

    Mr. Wellinghoff, then chairman of FERC, said that after he heard about the scope of the attack, he flew to California, bringing with him experts from the U.S. Navy's Dahlgren Surface Warfare Center in Virginia, which trains Navy SEALs. After walking the site with PG&E officials and FBI agents, Mr. Wellinghoff said, the military experts told him it looked like a professional job.

    In addition to fingerprint-free shell casings, they pointed out small piles of rocks, which they said could have been left by an advance scout to tell the attackers where to get the best shots.

    "They said it was a targeting package just like they would put together for an attack," Mr. Wellinghoff said.



    Full Story: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/...59141941621778
    Last edited by voivod; 02.07.14 at 05:14 AM.
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  2. #2
    Atomic Punk bklynboy68's Avatar
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    Default Lawmakers push to protect electric grid after report on attack

    Lawmakers are pushing to impose federal standards for protecting the country's electric grid from attack in the wake of a new report about a sniper assault on a California electrical substation last year that has raised fears the power grid is vulnerable to terrorism.

    The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said she and fellow senators plan to ask the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which has jurisdiction over the electric grid's reliability, to "set minimum security standards for critical substations."

    The April 16, 2013 the attack on Pacific Gas & Electric’s Metcalf transmission substation involved snipping AT&T fiber-optic lines to knock out phone and 911 service, and firing shots into a PG&E substation, causing outages. The assault had not been widely publicized until The Wall Street Journal reported new details in a story on Wednesday.

    The FBI is the lead agency in the investigation and an agency spokesman told the newspaper it doesn’t think the incident was a terror attack. However, Jon Wellinghoff, chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission at the time, called it "the most significant incident of domestic terrorism involving the U.S. power grid that has ever occurred."

    The incident began when intruders lifted heavy manhole covers at about 1:30 a.m. in two places on Monterey Highway south of San Jose, climbed under the road, and cut AT&T fiber optic cables, temporarily knocking out 911 service and phone service.

    In a 19-minute period, gunmen fired more than 100 rounds into substation equipment, disabling 17 of 20 big transformers, causing about $16 million in damage, according to The Wall Street Journal. No arrests have been made in the case.

    In December, during an oversight hearing, Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., described "an unprecedented and sophisticated attack on an electric grid substation with military-style weapons. Communications were disrupted. The attack inflicted substantial damage."

    He said he would withhold details of the incident to avoid harming the investigation but added he had been in touch with the FBI about it.

    One proposal being discussed in Congress is would give the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission the power to write and impose interim rules on grid defenses. The utility industry would still be able to influence any permanent requirements, according to the Journal.

    Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., said "the last thing I want to do is regulate any industry." But he told the newspaper utilities must do more to protect the grid for the sake of national security.

    Under current law, the commission has to accept or reject proposals written by an industry-dominated group, but cannot alter them, according to the report.

    Some utility industry executives told the Journal it would be difficult to come up with rules for improving security that would work in both urban and rural areas.

    "One size fits all may not get you true resiliency," said Lisa Barton, executive vice president of transmission for American Electric Power, adding that increasing protections could be costly. "I'm not saying it isn't worth it," she said.




    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014...ort-on-attack/
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  3. #3
    Baluchitherium Ted Van Halen's Avatar
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    How much of this sort of thing could have been thwarted if our borders had been with truly secure for the last ever how many years?
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    Hang 'Em High sickman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Van Halen View Post
    How much of this sort of thing could have been thwarted if our borders had been with truly secure for the last ever how many years?
    Whose to say it wasn't domestic terrorism.

  5. #5
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    My gf is an engineer in the industry. She deals with this. One of the big things that came out of the 9/11 commission was how easily the grid could be taken down and how horrific that would actually be.

    Anyway, they have people whose sole job it is to walk the field (it's concentrated solar power) and if they see anything that looks like someone broke in, they have to report it immediately to the FBI. Even if it is obvious someone just stole some copper, they have to report it.

    But if someone hit the grid, we'd be screwed

  6. #6
    Atomic Punk Dave's Dreidel's Avatar
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    There is absolutely no way to make our borders secure.

    Sorry to burst the bubble, but our borders are not even our biggest weakness. Our import/export ports are our biggest security liability. I've sat in on discussions about it, and it is truly horrifying when how easy it would be is discussed.

    The Chinese could load a decent sized army and nuclear missiles onto a freighter, before reaching US waters put them into the cargo carrier, and probably get them through customs without a hitch.

    Most people do not realize the unbelievable amount of goods that flow in and out of our ports, and the VAST majority of it is uninspected.
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  7. #7
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave's Dreidel View Post
    There is absolutely no way to make our borders secure.

    Sorry to burst the bubble, but our borders are not even our biggest weakness. Our import/export ports are our biggest security liability. I've sat in on discussions about it, and it is truly horrifying when how easy it would be is discussed.

    The Chinese could load a decent sized army and nuclear missiles onto a freighter, before reaching US waters put them into the cargo carrier, and probably get them through customs without a hitch.

    Most people do not realize the unbelievable amount of goods that flow in and out of our ports, and the VAST majority of it is uninspected.
    I agree, especially about the border never being "secure," but that is still more of a conventional warfare/invasion scenario, which I'm not saying isn't scary.

    But for terrorism purposes, which exists where enemies cannot fight using traditional warfare, hitting us by bringing down the grid would be significant.

  8. #8
    Baluchitherium Scott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave's Dreidel View Post
    There is absolutely no way to make our borders secure.

    Sorry to burst the bubble, but our borders are not even our biggest weakness. Our import/export ports are our biggest security liability. I've sat in on discussions about it, and it is truly horrifying when how easy it would be is discussed.

    The Chinese could load a decent sized army and nuclear missiles onto a freighter, before reaching US waters put them into the cargo carrier, and probably get them through customs without a hitch.

    Most people do not realize the unbelievable amount of goods that flow in and out of our ports, and the VAST majority of it is uninspected.
    I was in San Fran a couple of years ago - and did a harbor tour...there were 10+ ships each w/ +4,000 trailers on them STUFFED with imports...I was shocked - and the guy leading the tour said the REALLY scary thing is there were likely +40 boats out of site waiting to get in w/ just as much gear on them.
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  9. #9
    Baluchitherium Scott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovemachine97(Version 2) View Post
    My gf is an engineer in the industry. She deals with this. One of the big things that came out of the 9/11 commission was how easily the grid could be taken down and how horrific that would actually be.

    Anyway, they have people whose sole job it is to walk the field (it's concentrated solar power) and if they see anything that looks like someone broke in, they have to report it immediately to the FBI. Even if it is obvious someone just stole some copper, they have to report it.

    But if someone hit the grid, we'd be screwed
    I think it was 2003 when there was that massive blackout that occured in New York / eastern seaboard and much of Ontario...it was pretty crazy actually. That was just a bunch of systems that went down (repaired in a couple of days)...I'm scared to think about what would happen w/ something more serious.
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  10. #10
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott View Post
    I think it was 2003 when there was that massive blackout that occured in New York / eastern seaboard and much of Ontario...it was pretty crazy actually. That was just a bunch of systems that went down (repaired in a couple of days)...I'm scared to think about what would happen w/ something more serious.
    Our entire lives are based around electricity. Almost everything we do or rely on would be shut down.

  11. #11
    Atomic Punk
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    April 15 - Boston Marathon


    April 16 - Assault on California Power Station


    April 22 - A gunman took at least two shots at a security officer outside the Watts Bar nuclear power plant in east Tennessee and then escaped in a boat

    https://www.knoxnews.com/news/2013/a...nuclear-plant/

    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/...185128019.html
    Last edited by voivod; 02.13.14 at 04:52 AM.
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  12. #12
    Atomic Punk edwardv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by voivod View Post
    April 15 - Boston Marathon


    April 16 - Assault on California Power Station


    April 22 - A gunman took at least two shots at a security officer outside the Watts Bar nuclear power plant in east Tennessee and then escaped in a boat

    https://www.knoxnews.com/news/2013/a...nuclear-plant/

    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/...185128019.html
    You will never know the truth behind any attempts of terror especially with this administration. I used to fish from a boat near a big hydro electric dam on the Susquehanna River for years and since 9-11 you cant get close to it. They know the targets.
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